CBS62logoNEW2013_blue_final_header_White wwj950-sm2011b 971-ticket-35smb 35h_CBSSportsRad_Detroit

TALE OF THE TAPE

Tale Of The Tape: Green Bay Packers At Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers
Detroit Lions
(Photo Tom Lynn /Getty Images)
(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
(Photo Tom Lynn /Getty Images)
(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Quarterback
After Aaron Rodgers injured his left shoulder against the Chicago Bears in the Week Nine Monday night game, the hope was that he would return to the lineup for this Thanksgiving Day game at Detroit. That seemed a bit of a stretch from the start and it is almost certain that Scott Tolzien will be back in the lineup for the Packers once again. That means the Packers will have to scramble to find a way to win.
Winner Matthew Stafford must step up and deliver a great game against the Lions’ divisional rivals. Stafford has been good against the Chicago Bears, but the Lions lost their first game against the Packers in Green Bay. They can’t let this traditional home game slip through their fingers and that means Stafford must have one of his best games of the season.
Offense
The Packers are going to try to attack the Lions with their running game. Eddie Lacy has a legitimate chance to push hard for the rookie of the year award because of his relentless and attacking running style. He is very solid between the tackles and he can cause damage at the second level. Jordy Nelson is going to get open, but can the quarterback get him the ball consistently.
Winner Putting together a gameplan is a lot easier when you know that Calvin Johnson is going to be in the lineup. If Johnson can continue to string excellent games together, he has a chance to put his name in the MVP conversation. Reggie Bush is a big threat on the ground and he should also be able to do damage as a receiver. Joseph Fauria remains a solid red zone threat at tight end.
Defense
Winner The Packers will need one of their best defensive efforts of the season in order to have a chance to win this game. While they are very tough against the interior run thanks to B.J. Raji and Johnny Jolly, the defense can wear down late in games. Linebackers A.J. Hawk and Clay Matthews can put their imprint on the game with their hard hitting, while cornerback Tramon Williams must be sharp vs. Johnson.
The Lions have excellent defensive personnel up front, as they are led by defensive tackles Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley. Both men have shown the tendency to make big plays when the game is on the line. However, both have also made huge miscues and discipline is a concern. Linebackers DeAndre Levy and Stephen Tulloch are both underrated and assets to Gunther Cunningham’s defense.
Special Teams
Winner The Packers have been better on special teams this year than they were in 2012. Placekicker Mason Crosby’s improvement is one of the main reasons for that. Tim Masthay is just an average punter, but return specialist Michah Hyde can do some damage for the Packers.
Winner The Lions have a solid return specialist in Micheal Spurlock. He is at his best when he makes one cut and then heads up the field. He struggles going east to west, as do all but the fastest return specialists. Veteran David Akers has been a good but not great placekicker.

The Winner Is

(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Winner Detroit Lions
3 out of 4

Since it is looking less and less likely that Rodgers will be in the lineup for this game, the Lions have the advantage. Look for a big passing day from Stafford and a monster game from Johnson.

MORE TALES OF THE TAPE

  1. EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 21: Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants looks pon during warm ups prior to their game against the Houston Texans at MetLife Stadium on September 21, 2014 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 17: Actor Liam Neeson attends the Universal Pictures and Cross Creek Pictures with The Cinema Society screening of "A Walk Among the Tombstones" at Chelsea Bow Tie Cinemas on September 17, 2014 in New York City.
    Who Is Type-Casted More, Eli Manning Or Liam Neeson?

    Eli Manning always plays the same role. How does he compare to Liam Neeson, one of type-casting’s greats?

  2. ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 18: Wide receiver Devin Hester #17 of the Atlanta Falcons carries the ball against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during a game at the Georgia Dome on September 18, 2014 in Atlanta, Georgia. SEATTLE, WA - JUNE 18: Amazon.com founder and CEO Jeff Bezos presents the company's first smartphone, the Fire Phone, on June 18, 2014 in Seattle, Washington. The much-anticipated device is available for pre-order today and is available exclusively with AT&T service.
    Is Devin Hester Or Amazon.com Better At Returns?

    Devin Hester of the Atlanta Falcons has an NFL record 20 returns for touchdown. But how does he stack up against Amazon?

  3. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images) (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
    Tale Of The Tape: Chicago Bears At New York Jets

    While Jay Cutler lacks consistency, he is capable of taking over any game and carrying the Bears with his strong arm when he gets on a roll.

See All Tales of the Tape
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,931 other followers